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Re: Dual in Ugaritic Re: [ANE-2] Unicorns and the Dating of Deuteronomy

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  • Peter T. Daniels
    ... I had just typed out Tropper s entire section on the dual morphology when I touched some key and the whole thing disappeared, and I won t do it again. I
    Message 1 of 5 , Jul 9, 2006
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      --- Yitzhak Sapir <yitzhaksapir@...> wrote:

      > On 7/9/06, Peter T. Daniels wrote:
      > > Tropper's grammar of Ugaritic (sec. 53.2) appears not to mention the
      > > contrast between duals with -m and plurals with -t, though he cites
      > > Sivan's 1983 JSS article on the same topic. Perhaps this is because
      > > Tropper considers the dual marker to be aa (< au) and the m to be the
      > > enclitic. Curiously, Pardee in his encyclopedic review of Tropper (AfO
      > > online version only) does not notice this, and even at one point refers
      > > to Tropper's "dual morpheme m." Sivan in his grammar (HdO) mentions
      > > neither of his own articles but clearly states his position on m vs. t;
      > > for him, the dual marker is Vm just as it is for every other Semitist.
      > > (What's the year of the Leshonenu article?)
      > The date of the Leshonenu article is 1981/1982. So it is possibly an
      > original from which the JSS article was translated and perhaps
      > expanded.
      > I had thought the dual marker and in fact so too the masculine plural
      > marker was what remained of the original PS "enclitic" m/n after nouns.
      > Is that Tropper's position? This would explain words in Hebrew such as
      > xomotayim "two walls" where both the -ot ending appears and the -ayim
      > appears.
      > Why do you suggest that aa (the same as "a:"?) < au? Is that also
      > Tropper's suggestion? I thought that because aa appears in Arabic as
      > well, the reconstruction was only aa. An "au" reconstruction would
      > explain such forms as the Gezer calendar yrxw which I have suggested
      > on my blog is to be associated with the word yxdw:
      > http://toldot.blogspot.com/2006/02/yrhw-in-gezer-calendar.html

      I had just typed out Tropper's entire section on the dual morphology
      when I touched some key and the whole thing disappeared, and I won't do it again. I suggested nothing; I merely passed on what I thought T. was saying. But that wasn't it; the nominative is a^ < a^u. The dual is /-a^/, to which mimation is added. He notes that Lipinski (he fails to note that everyone else as well) says the dual is the unanalyzed suffix -a:m or or -i:m.

      Peter T. Daniels grammatim@...
    • Amanda-Alice Maravelia
      I have gathered the following references to the unicorn , following the Hellenic (o ) translation of the Bible (Vulgata in paremthesis): 1. Numeri, 23, 22; 2.
      Message 2 of 5 , Jul 10, 2006
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        I have gathered the following references to the "unicorn", following the
        Hellenic (o')
        translation of the Bible (Vulgata in paremthesis):

        1. Numeri, 23, 22;
        2. Numeri, 24, 8;
        3. Deuteron., 33, 17;
        4. Iob, 39, 9-12;
        5. Psalmi, 21 (22), 22;
        6. Psalmi, 28 (29), 6;
        7. Psalmi, 77 (78), 69;
        8. Psalmi, 91 (92), 11;
        9. Damiel, 8, 5 (?).

        The doubted word being "r'aim" (resh-'aleph-yod-mem)


        Amanda-Alice Maravelia

        >From: "Yitzhak Sapir" <yitzhaksapir@...>
        >Reply-To: ANE-2@yahoogroups.com
        >To: ANE-2@yahoogroups.com, biblical-studies@yahoogroups.com
        >Subject: [ANE-2] Unicorns and the Dating of Deuteronomy
        >Date: Sun, 9 Jul 2006 13:04:21 +0300
        >Anyone visiting the Biblical Zoo in Jerusalem will notice a very
        >significant omission. It might be understandable as these are
        >rare creatures whose capture and breeding in captivity is very
        >tricky. But still, one does not go to the biblical zoo in order to
        >see the common fly. Nevertheless, while there are no unicorns
        >in the confines of the zoo, the zoo did devote a monthly focus
        >webpage to the unicorn:
        >The Septuagint translates the word "r'em" as "monokerwtos" in
        >Num 23:22 (see:
        >Another verse in the Bible that may suggest the "r'em" is a unicorn
        >is Psalm 92:11, which says "wattarem kir'em qarni" -- "and you shall
        >exalt my horn like a r'em's [horn]". Interestingly, this verse spells the
        >word r'em as "r)ym", using a -y- for a vowel letter, which is consistent
        >with late orthography. It may thus provide additional and indirect
        >support for the reading of "r)m" = "unicorn" in post-exilic or Greek times,
        >the primary evidence being the translation of the Septuagint.
        >However, it is also possible to read this as "wattarem kir'em qarnay" --
        >"and you shall exalt my couple of horns like a r'em's [horns]" if one
        >pays no attention to the Massoretic vocalization. This verse just goes
        >to show that the Biblical Zoo webpage is not kidding when it writes:
        >"Any efforts to approach them have usually ended in disaster, for the
        >animal or for the researcher."
        >It probably goes without saying, that a unicorn has one single
        >horn. It would be silly to claim that two-horned beast is a unicorn.
        >In the Hebrew of the Massoretic Bible, horns, like other body parts
        >that normally come in pairs, are read as a dual: qarnayim. It is well
        >known, that Ugaritic has a much more extensive system for duals,
        >which affects not just "normally paired words" but even common
        >everyday words. Telling apart words that are duals in Ugaritic is no
        >simple matter. Sometimes, we just don't know, or we guess. Daniel
        >Sivan, in "On the Dual in the Ugaritic Nouns", Leshonenu 46/1: 65-71
        >(Hebrew), writes:
        >"At times, forms that have the -m ending will be considered dual since
        >their plurals have the ending -t: so thlxnm 'two tables' and in plural
        >'thlxnt', l$nm 'two tongues' and compare the plural l$onot in Hebrew,
        >li$a:na:tu in Akkadian, (nm 'two eyes' alongside the plural (nt
        >'fountains'. At times, the forms themselves are dual from their very
        >nature (for example, dual body parts, etc). So ydm 'two hands'; (nm
        >'two eyes', mtnm 'two hips', qrnm 'two horns'." On the last one, he
        >provides a footnote: "KTU 1.12, I,30, and compare the plural qrnt
        >KTU 1.17 VI,22."
        >It is not usually realized that these comments are useful for Hebrew
        >as well as Ugaritic. The words ydm and qrnm in Ugaritic are in
        >parallel to the Hebrew yadayim and qarnayim, and both have -t ending
        >plurals in Hebrew, yadot and qarnot. For example, "qarnot hammizbeax",
        >"horns of the altar". This can be compared to the "qrnt" of the Ugaritic
        >plural mentioned in Sivan's footnote. The dual in the Hebrew of the Bible
        >is very "flexible" as to what a "dual" means. In Jer 38:4, we find "ydey
        >)n$ey hammilxamah" in the sense that each man has two hands, even
        >though there are more than two hands in the total count (more than one
        >person * 2 hands each = at least four hands, and likely many more). In
        >contrast, where the subject does not have a pair of "hands", the word
        >"yadot" is used. For example, in the case of 1 Kings 7:32, it says
        >"wydot ha)opannim bammkonah".
        >Another good example is Deut 33:17: "bkwr $wrw hdr lw, wqrny r)m qrnyw".
        >The JPS translates this as "His firstling bullock, majesty is his; and his
        >horns are the horns of the wild-ox." What this translation does not make
        >clear is that the Hebrew uses the dual of the word qeren, thus making it
        >obvious that the subject -- the r'em -- is not a unicorn, no matter what the
        >Septuagint says. It might be argued that the r'em is used in the collective,
        >and that the words 'qrny' and 'qrnyw' are intended in the plural, whereby the
        >masculine is known to displace the feminine plural in many places in
        >Hebrew, but this appears to me to be really a forced and unlikely
        >interpretation. Besides, as the Biblical Zoo webpage says, "once one has
        >observed a true unicorn, one will never again make an identification
        >It is more reasonable to argue that the verse does not speak of a unicorn,
        >and it is only under Greek influence that the r'em was identified as a
        >unicorn. While one verse is by no means evidence, it appears that the
        >usage of "r'em" in Deut 33:17 predates both the Greek period and the
        >Septuagint translation.
        >Yitzhak Sapir
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